From a Compound Eye by Guided by Voices impresario Bob Pollard.

"From A Compound Eye" By Bob Pollard

By John Saleeby
November 1, 2010


2010 is almost over but 2006's "From A Compound Eye" is the one CD I have been listening to all day every day for most of the year. I have a few other CDs I listen to but that's just to make "From A Compound Eye" sound even more amazing when I listen to it again. It's a boldly creative work with an infinite variety of sounds and moods and can you tell that I read a lot of record reviews in Rolling Stone to get ready for this article? Boy, was that a mistake. Good thing I quit before I wrote an article about a record by Radiohead instead of one by Bob Pollard. Yeah, Radiohead - That's some band I found out while looking at Rolling Stone yesterday. Ever heard of em? I think they're from Seattle.

It will be years before we know exactly how many Rock And Roll Records Bob Pollard has produced in his Lifetime. Part of the problem in determining exactly how many Bob Pollard records there are is the fact that most of them are so good that once you have discovered another one you will listen to it over and over and over again for at least a year while who knows how many other Bob Pollard records remain undetected. The guy makes great Rock And Roll Records the way I make jokes about how much I'd like to fuck Jennifer Love Hewitt - That's a LOT of Rock And Roll Records.

Perhaps a little biographical material is in order. I was born in New Orleans in 1961 and . . . Oh, Bob Pollard biographical material? So much for the Jennifer Love Hewitt jokes, I guess. Bob Pollard was born in 1957, had his first beer in 1958, and founded the band Guided By Voices in 1959. Any relation to the Silent Movie Comedian Snub Pollard? I'll ask Stan Laurel about that at the next Old Gagster's Home Bingo Game. Bob was a Schoolteacher during the early days of Guided By Voices which sounds like a good idea for a Movie until you remember "School Of Rock" and get pissed off because you're stupid friends made you rent "Be Kind Rewind" (Bob is so busy recording he has yet to find out what happens when you hit the "REWIND" button).

For the most part Bob is Here For The Beer. Most Music inspired by the Knucklehead Drug is of the Honky Tonk Hootenanny Hoedown variety but when filtered through Bob Pollard the results are as exotic as whatever those poor fools back in the Sixties thought they were going after with LSD and killing Sharon Tate . If only beer did for all those Rap and Country people that it has done for Bob - A Rap fan listens to a record about The Street while he's on The Street and when it's all over he's still on The Street, Why bother? A Country fan listens to a record about . . . I think I made my point with the Rap fan, who gives a shit about the Country fan? But you listen to a Bob Pollard record about God only knows what while doing whatever you happen to be doing and when it's all over you've lost all interest in whatever you were doing or in ever doing much of anything else - IT'S AWESOME! Man, if we could get this Music to the Rap fans on The Street they'd lose all interest in The Street and then the Country Music fans would really be in for it! HELTER SKELTER, MAN! HELTER SKELTER!!!! Sorry.

But it's not Beer that we have to Thank for Bob's Music - It's Bob. Kids Of Today, if you want to be like Bob Pollard, drinking Beer won't do it - Just look at The Strokes! You will never be like Bob Pollard. You want to be like Bob, find out who Bob is trying to be like and start from there. The Bad News - Bob's main influence seems to be . . . Peter Gabriel? I heard a Peter Gabriel Song that I liked once - The one with the whistling. You know - (Saleeby starts whistling, remembers he's alone, takes out his dick, and waves it around singing "Jennifer Love Hewitt! Jennifer Love Hewitt!". Does Peter Gabriel have a Song like that? Bob probably does on some record some where out there. Let me know if you've ever heard it.) So forget about ever being like Bob Pollard. He is as rare a Rock And Roll speciman as Elvis, Dylan, Hendrix, and Neilson. What? Rick Neilson, you don't know who I meant when I said "Neilson"? What are you? Retarded? What? "Who is Rick Neilson?"?!? He's the CHEAP TRICK guy, ya big moose! You never listened to . . . I've writing about Bob Pollard to a bunch of beer swilling slobs that don't even know about Cheap Trick! Don't you Phillistines know about Starbucks? (Saleeby stamps his feet and rolls his eyes but gets mixed up and stamps his eyes and rolls his feet. Writes the rest of the article in the Hospital hoping to pass out and wake up finding that the World has been destroyed by a Zombie plague)

"From A Compound Eye" was the first Official Bob Pollard Solo Album after he stopped making Guiding By Voices records in 2004. Bob realized that he had made so many Guided By Voices records that the Apocolypse would have to be delayed another Millenium and a half to give everybody enough time to hear them all. Bob was making solo records the whole time he was making Guided By Voices records but those records were widely considered to be Guided By Voices records Bob made while he was too drunk to remember the name of his band. No, an actual Bob Pollard Solo Album is one recorded after 2004 with Todd Tobias Producing, playing all of the instruments, and running out to buy more beer when Bob starts slamming his head against the floor trying to come up with new lyric ideas. Todd Produced the last few Guided By Voices albums and his Little Brother Greg was one of the last two or three dozen guys to play bass in the band. All of the guys who have backed up Bob on Guided By Voices records through out the years are American Heroes and when Bob makes it big and sends them all on a Vacation Cruise it will take more ships than it took to sail the United States Army to Europe in World War Two. But I say it's High Time we gave Todd Tobias props (I learned that from a Rolling Stone record review about a band called 'Lil Wayne) for his work on "From A Compound Eye" and the three thousand two hundred and eleven Bob Solo Albums since. Playing all of the instruments on an album is hard work even when a garden slug like Paul McCartney does it and it is amazing that Tobias has done such a brilliant job on so many albums in such a short time. Dave Grohl did it on the first Foo Fighters album and as soon as he finished he went out and hired a bunch of Fighters to handle the Foo on all the other albums. I'm sorry, the Nurse just gave me a shot. Look out for the ZOMBIES, bitch!

Additional Bob Pollard Info

Wikipedia on Bob
Everything you could possibly want to know about the man, with a extra pleasing scent.
Rather crappy looking website about guided by voices.

Video for GBV's "I Am a Scientist"

And, like every Bob Pollard record, "From A Compound Eye" has got TONS OF GREAT SONGS! Like "Love Is Stronger Than Witchcraft" - If that title doesn't have you running down the street to pick up "From A Compound Eye" you must be creeped out by that "From A Compound Eye" eye thing! Get over it! "Love Is Stronger Than Witchcraft" is so good it will have you walking around singing "Love is stronger than Witchcraft!! Love is stronger than Witchcraft!!! Love is stronger than Witchcraft!!!" even if you are Anton Le Vay (And, if you are Anton Le Vay, Christine O'Donnell kicks your ass!). And "Conquerer Of The Moon", which is kind of like HG Wells meets R.E.M. when they were still cool (Cool R.E.M. was so long ago they probably were hanging out with HG Wells until The Time Machine took Michael Stipe to 2010 and he got really depressed). Uh . . . What else? "I Surround You Naked"? Beat THAT, Lady Ga Ga! Or "Dancing Men And Dancing Girls", which sounds kind of iffy until you realize that it isn't "Dancing Boys And Dancing Girls" or "Dancing Men And Dancing Women" - No, it's "Dancing Men And Dancing Girls" which is actually kind of pervy and that's why it's HOT!!! When is "iCarly" coming on Nickleodeon again?

But the time for Bob Pollard and Guided By Voices and silly articles in Acid Logic has come to an end. The Nurse and an Orderly are in my Hospital Room right now and I can tell by the Horror in their faces that the Dead have begun to rise up from the Grave to Feast on The Living and Civilization is on the verge of collapse. No, they're just bummed out because they have to change my diaper. Ha ha! Once they get my dick out I'll do my Song for em . . . JENNIFER LOVE HEWITT!!! JENNIFER LOVE HEWITT!!! JENNIFER LOVE HEWITT!!!


John Saleeby wrote for The National Lampoon while he was in high school, was a stand up comic in New York, and has contributed to the net humor zines, Campaign Central, and the legendary American Jerk. He's on medication now so he's probably a little nicer now than he was when you met him earlier. Email -

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